Gunner get my MBA

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

INSEAD Interview No. 1

Monday evening I had my first interview with INSEAD. The alum who conducted it was a graduate in 2003 and is a Malaysian. Overall, I think the interview went well. It was very casual, and I felt a bit overdressed with a tie on... he must have taken his off as work had finished (normally I don't wear ties unless there's a meeting with a client).

The questions mainly centered on "Why MBA?", "Why Now?" & "Why INSEAD". I felt that I ended telling much of my life story while answering the first two questions. The third one was quite tough as I had to justify why INSEAD would be the logical choice for me. In the end, I think I did a fairly reasonable job. We had it at a cafeteria and when it closed, we moved outside to continue at a table near a garden. I managed to get a lot of info on the actual program and it reinforced further that INSEAD would be a great school in which to study at.

Next interview is on Monday so I will probably give more detail and perhaps compare the two interviews later. This one sounds more intimidating. I haven't spoken to the person but only his secretary, whereas the first interviewer was quite friendly even on the phone. I just hope I'll get through it comfortably without too many problems.


Things are looking up. It's amazing how 90 minutes of football (or 80 on my part as I missed the first 10, snoozing twice) can change peoples perception so drastically. Just last week, when the Gunners lost to Liverpool people were saying that Arsenal were "shit", "past it" and "on the way down". Yet after this morning's game, people are singing the praises again. Even though the job is only half done, we can't help but look optimistically at the second leg tie after the Gunners wonderfully dispatched a team of Galacticos. In fact, it was mainly due to the brilliance of the mother of all Galacticos (yes Monsieur Henry himself), that we ended up winning, but the manner in which we won gave us a lot of hope for the future. The fact that only three of the outfield players were older than 24 spoke volumes about the performance. Even Flamini filling in at Left back did a good enough job on Beckham and Cicinho to ensure that nervous moments were kept to a minimum. Now I know that this season's hopes rest on Champions League success but for me if we can get past Real Madrid (which is a strong possibility now), then we can definitely dream of going all the way. In fact, I would say getting past the Quarter Finals would be a good enough reason to celebrate, providing we qualify for the Champs League next year. With the crop of youngsters getting exposed to more playing time, I think there's lots of cause for optimism for next season. I know I've mentioned it before but I don't know any other team in the League (or in the world) that has as much attacking talent potential as Arsenal does now. Just think about it. Henry is at his prime (and is hands down the best forward in the world!!). Reyes and Van Persie are still in their early twenties and both have proven that they've got the class (only now they need to turn it on more often). Adebayor is an enigma of sorts, and looks to be as useful as Kanu in his prime. He too is only 21 (or 22). Then there's Walcott (enough's been said about him) and Lupoli (who's been banging in goals for fun in the reserve's league) who are both still teenagers. I'm not even mentioning Aliadiere who's out on loan, and it's enough for me to think that the future at the Emirates stadium will be rosy indeed. Or should I say the future will be "Red & White".

I've actually got updates on my MBA story but I'll put it in another post. I just hope nothing will happen in next couple of days which will wipe this stupid smirk off my face!!!

Friday, February 17, 2006

MAS Travel Fair

It's back again... the annual MAS Travel Fair. This year it come's with a twist, as you can actually buy the tickets online. It's only the first day, but I've already got my tickets. Been dying for a holiday as the past weeks have been stressful. My wife and I will be going somewhere in April. I'll elaborate more as the time draws closer.

Nonetheless, this year the rates are not great. In fact, I think the rates are not much cheaper than last years normal rates. MAS have upped their rates due to increasing costs, but it's the customers like us who'll suffer.

Oh well... I guess we've got to start getting used to this what with the high oil price not appearing to come down anytime soon.

Friday, February 10, 2006

two interviews

Just a quick post to all MBA students/applicants... I was wondering whether any of you have been asked to do two interviews for your application. I just got told my interviewer has left Malaysia and was given two other interviewer names. Upon checking, it was confirmed that I was expected to have interviews with both. I'd appreciate any feedback from anyone who has experienced this. I find it odd, and wonder whether it says anything about my candidacy (perhaps my application was too abnormal that they need perspectives from two sources to ascertain whether I'm actually real). Should I be worried? or perhaps relaxed?

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

tagged by SgHama

Yes... it's true, I've been tagged by SgHama.. so here goes..

Four jobs I've had in my life:

1 outdoor roofing apprentice
2 drinks maker at a juice bar
3 research analyst
4 business development manager

Four movies I can watch over and over:

1 Shawshank Redemption
2 Lord of the Rings trilogy
3 Oceans Eleven
4 The Usual Suspects

Four places I have lived:

1 Kuala Lumpur
2 Perth, Australia
3 London
4 (don't think I've ever lived anywhere else)

Four TV shows I love to watch:

1 Monk
2 Scrubs
3 American Idol (the auditions)
4 Everybody Loves Raymond

Four places I have been on vacation:

1 Venice, Italy
2 Whistler, Canada
3 Siem Reap, Cambodia
4 Pebble Beach, USA

Four of my favorite dishes:

1 Steak (medium rare)
2 Sashimi
3 Nasi Lemak (with Sambal Sotong)
4 Cozy's Chicken Chop

Four websites I visit daily:

1 soccernet
3 GMail
4 The Star Online

Four places I would rather be right now:

1 At home with my wife
2 Perth, Australia
3 Whistler
4 Pangkor Laut Resort

Four bloggers I am tagging:

1 Nadio
2 Riz
3 Shahriman
4 Franky4MBA

Friday, February 03, 2006

blog problems

I have a problem with my blog as the information on the sidebar seems to have gone to the bottom of the screen. Now I tried to change the template and the preview showed that the screen was back to normal. Now that I make the change, it's all gone kooky again.

I would appreciate any help from all fellow bloggers out there.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

a nice relaxing break... so it seems

It's been a hectic first month of the year so far, with obscene amounts of work squeezed in between holidays. Added the fact that my family was back from Australia made the days zoom past and now it's February already! Nevertheless, I had a nice 5 day break for Chinese New Year from last Saturday to Wednesday, and it gave me time to catch up on some rest, some play and also some work.

The wife actually left for Perth on Tuesday morning so that left me with Tuesday and Wednesday alone, and what did I do to celebrate my new (albeit shortlived) bachelorhood status? ...of course I went to the office. Actually after slacking off over the weekend, Tuesday was quite a busy long day as I went to office early morning (after the airport) and then squeezed in a gym workout during lunch. Next I played futsal from 6 to 8 and straight after went for dinner with my brothers and cousins at a nice japanese restaurant. To top it off we went bowling till midnight. I got 177 for my second game (which is my second highest game score ever!) in which I had 5 strikes so I have to say that I'm pretty proud of myself.

Today (Wednesday) I woke up and could hardly walk. Hence I didn't go out the whole day but spent most of it working from home, blogging and finally squeezed in the movie "Flight Plan" somewhere in there. I have to admit it's been a hectic two days.

Also as I promised before, here are some sample pictures from my India trip.

IIM in Ahmedabad

some yummy Gujarati food.

the wife looking great in a saree (she's on the right)

chaotic market place outside the Jama Masjid in Old Delhi

AND FINALLY - THE MAGNIFICENT TAJ MAHAL (through my own eyes - or camera lens at least...)

update (2/2/06) - I couldn't post this last night so am doing it just before I leave the office. There's no one else at the office so I better leave before the creepy ghosts get here...